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UN Strategies for Disaster Risk Reduction

March 17 – Sendai, Japan – The U.N. World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction is putting an exclamation point on lessons learned from recent calamities and what more can be done to prepare for the inevitable.

Just days after the fourth anniversary of the triple disasters that struck Japan, government and business leaders, NGOs and citizens from around the globe are aiming to forge a new international framework to reduce catastrophic risk.

Tohoku University Professsor Fumihiko Imamura, an expert in disaster control research, said shoring up food and water, energy and heat supply, as well as having mobility in crises are imperative.

“We have learned the precious value of electricity in emergency situations. There is often tremendous amounts of crisis information to be distributed, but this depends on a power supply to facilitate reception. That’s a reason why electric vehicles are becoming more important in disaster,” said Professor Imamura.

The private sector has its part to play, and an industry convention in Sendai is concurrently highlighting strategies and resources to be employed when disaster strikes.

Nissan Vice Chairman Toshiyuki Shiga says some planning measures involving evacuation and logistics are common sense, while others have been learned in response to recent calamities.

“We have created a deep Business Continuity Plan (BCP), not only for Nissan, but for our entire supply chain, from Tier 1 and Tier 2 firms to all suppliers involved. This is to ensure we can resume operations as quickly as possible when a disaster strikes,” he said.

Best practices adopted at the UN Conference in Sendai are hoped to limit the impact of future disasters on communities around the globe, saving lives and raising the resilience bar for all.

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